By: Dallas J. Short
In our office, we work hard and we laugh hard, sometimes to the point of tears or having to excuse ourselves from the room to get it together. We enjoy our clients, our jobs and each other. We don’t say “that’s so funny,” we burst into boisterous explosions of joy which flood out into the hallways and beyond. Though I’m talking about human interactions in real time, Facebook recently released a study and people are laughing differently online than they used to.
“As denizens of the Internet will know, laughter is quite common: 15% of people included laughter in a post or comment that week. The most common laugh is haha, followed by various emoji and hehe. Age, gender and geographic location play a role in laughter type and length: young people and women prefer emoji, whereas men prefer longer hehes. People in Chicago and New York prefer emoji, while Seattle and San Francisco prefer hahas.”
As the pie chart shows, the vast majority of people in the dataset are haha-ers (51.4%), then there are the emoji lovers (33.7%), the hehe-ers (12.7%), and finally, the lol-ers (1.9%).
The report also stated “Both men and women like their hahas and emoji, followed by hehes and lols. The hahas and to some extent the hehes are preferred by men, whereas emoji are clearly dominated by women, who also seem to like the lols a bit more than men.”
I’m a haha, hehe, ha, hahahahahahaha, thumbs up, obnoxious emoji type of guy, never jumped on board with LOL. I actually become a sad face emoji when people say LOL out loud. It seemed like OMG and LOL had once taken over and were unavoidable, everywhere from t-shirts to songs to commercials to even my little nieces were saying it. But alas, like Jay Z had to step in to end auto-tune, it looks like the three letter abbreviation has also seen its best days behind it and is headed towards irrelevance. Hashtag phew.
The rise of the emoji though is something that continues to blast off, with more and more new ones being released every day. It’s not just a smile or frown anymore, it’s pizza, it’s a blind monkey, it’s girls holding hands, it’s 100, it’s Beyonce, it’s beer, it’s throwing up the U (you are not convincing me that is something else), there is an emoji for everything.. or there will soon be. Sony Pictures Animation will even be making a movie about emoji. The deal comes after a bidding process with Warner Bros. and Paramount. It is a safe bet that if you’re not sick of them, you will be and something else will hopefully come along. I also predict a lot more misinterpretations during conversations as emoji use increases, but at least it will be a fun-looking conflict.
So, good riddance LOL, I will not shed an online tear for you. I will continue to stick to my haha. Such a random thing to do research on, but hey, I’m sure they had fun doing it. How do you laugh? Is there certain online laughter you don’t use or get tired of? As always, if you like what you read, please be social and share.
Live, love, learn and laugh!
You can read Facebook’s full report and check out more of their detailed infographics here: https://research.facebook.com/blog/1605690073053884/the-not-so-universal-language-of-laughter